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Book Review: Bombay Lunchbox

By Carolyn Caldicott

ISBN 9780711233836 | 128 Pages  |  Hardback  | Published by
Frances Lincoln


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Although his book contains over 50 recipes I find myself very reluctant to call it a "cookery book". So what would I call it? A miniature "coffee table" book and for those of you who haven't heard that term, it usually refers to a glossy book which is often highly illustrated and suitable for placing on coffee tables in private living rooms or public waiting areas, so people can browse through to pass the time.


This book does have some lovely photography, however too many are not of the recipes and the general feeling I got was that it was put together using up odds and ends - from the  graphics to the recipes to the general editorial.


The lunchbox title refers to Indian "Tiffins" which have become better known in the west recent years. However it seemed to me that the recipes, which ranged from full blown curries to drinks, were no more suited to this form of service than any other Indian recipes.


The book starts with a short editorial as to how Tiffins came about and then launches into a chapter called Classic Anglo-Indian Favourites which includes Mulligatawny Soup, Egg Curry, Railway Lamb Curry and Kedgeree. Ah, that reminds me, this is not a vegetarian cookbook as is implied on the front  fly sheet.


Next comes a chapter called Lunch in a box consisting of mainly vegetarian offerings, then chapters called Afternoon Tiffin and Tiffin Snacks which feature all sorts of recipes from sandwiches to samosas to spiced coffee.


Many of the recipes have some sort of commentary at the beginning, with measurements in metric and imperial. There were a couple of recipes which you may not have come across, such as Khasta Kachoris (pastry puffs stuffed with spiced lentils and fried) but I can't see myself going back to this book over and over again. It might make a pleasant gift for someone who has a general interest in food.


READER OFFER -To order Bombay Lunchbox at the discounted price of £7.99 including p&p * (RRP: £9.99), telephone 01903 828503 or email and quote the offer code APG196.  *UK ONLY - Please add £2.50 if ordering from overseas.

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About the Authors

For many years, Carolyn and Chris Caldicott owned the World Food Café in London’s Covent Garden, where they cooked and served delicious vegetarian food from recipes collected on their travels. They are the co-authors of World Food Café, The Spice Routes, World Food Café 2, World Food Café Quick & Easy, and The Vegetarian Bible, all published by Frances Lincoln.

Carolyn now works as a full-time author, food stylist and cook. As well as writing on food and travel for Elle magazine, she is the author of Vintage Tea Party and Rosehips on a Kitchen Table, also published by Frances Lincoln.

Chris is a journalist and photographer, and his photographs appear in a wide range of newspapers and magazines, including the Daily Telegraph, the Sunday Times, Condé Nast Traveller, House & Garden and Vanity Fair.



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